What is arrhythmia definition?

Imagine your heart as a symphony orchestra. The strings are made up of the atria and ventricles, while the electrical system acts as the conductor. This perfect concert can be disrupted by an unwelcome guest: arrhythmia. But what exactly is arrhythmia? Let’s take a closer look.

Elec-what-now?

Before we delve into arrhythmia definition, let’s first define some key terms related to our heart’s electrical system:
SA Node: The sinoatrial (SA) node is located in the right atrium of the heart and acts as a natural pacemaker.
AV Node: The atrioventricular (AV) node serves as a secondary pacemaker to ensure that signals from SA node reach ventricles.
Myocardium: Refers to the muscle tissue of the heart
Electrolytes: Minerals such as sodium, potassium and calcium necessary for proper function of cells including those within myocardial tissue

With these terminologies out of the way, let us dive deep into what exactly is arrhythmia.

Breaking Down Arrythmia

Arrhythmias refer to any irregularity or abnormality in rhythm or forcefulness associated with depolarisation causing contraction — called systole–and relaxation —called diastole—of myocardial activities responsible for pumping blood throughout our body“.
Our heartbeat follows this simplistic pattern: lub-dub-lub-dub. Now imagine if this lub-dub turned into dub-lu-bup-du-uulb… That’s how an arrhythmic beat would sound like if it had vocals.. Creepy isn’t it?

Types Of Arrythmias

Arrythmias have been categorised based on their characteristics:

Tachycardic Vs Bradycardic(Are you too fast or too slow?)

  • Tachycardia: A heart rate that is too fast. Usually, a resting heart rate of 100 beats per minute or more is classified as tachycardic.
  • Bradycardia: A heart rate that is too slow. Resting rates below 60 beats per minute are categorized as Bradycardia; Therefore an ECG should be done to rule out underlying arrhythmias.

Supraventricular Vs Ventricular (Heavenly infighting.)

Arrythmias can also be pinpointed to either the atrial chambers above the ventricles or to the ventricles themselves:
Supraventricular Arrhythmias originate from generally above the AV node like foreshadowed by their name prefix ‘ supra’
Ventricular Arrhythmias originate in hearts’ bottom chambers –ventricles

A Vicious Circle Of Too Many Types

Sadly, there are way too many types of such cardiac complications some which may overlap hence making it harder for even professionals.The most common ones include,

  • Ventricular Fibrillation
  • Torsades De Pointes
  • Premature Contractions
  • Sick Sinus Syndrome(Semi -synonyms with sinus bradychadia)

To put things into perspective, imagine sorting jelly beans based on colour without access to light whilst blindfolded and limited time.. It’s going to cause havoc

The Signs And Symptoms(Body Speaketh!)

Now onto how arrhythmic complication could bring itself forth :

  • Dizziness
  • Lightheadeness
  • Shortness Of Breath
       Table1: Signs and symptoms associated with Arrhythmia
    

It is worth noting though not all patients react these equally neither depending on severity of this condition nor underlining cause age being one factor .Some people have absolutely no signs whatsoever while some may suddenly drop dead without warning.(yes you heard that right.)

Confirmed? Yes?

==> Seek immediate medical attention if experiencing any symptoms of arrhythmia; no need to flex on’ know it alls’ or ‘ too cool-by-the-pool guys.’

Causes

Some arrythmias are a result of age, and as we’ve mentioned earlier the inevitable striding towards death alone which is unforeseeable. Additionally , Other risk factors include:
Heart Disease: Diseases such as coronary artery disease (CAD), cardiomyopathy, valvular heart disease influence how the electrical conduction in your heart works.
Genetics: Some families have had trauma surviving arrhythmic attacks repeatedly leading to manillians upon millions lost in terms of lives annually ; A genetic predisposition can also be there for acquiring one at varying points throughout the course lifetime.

  • Just like popping bubble wrap sometimes this condition might transpire spontaneously’ – Poof! You’re Rick Rolled!

Not Self Diagnosable( Go see a doctor!)

Given how convoluted these complications get , Such conditions cannot self-diagnosed with Web-MD, Reddit or by any online means whatsoever or using mirror neurons. 

If worried about sudden muscle twitching look elsewhere than searching Google. Consult professionals before derailing yourself

Diagnosis Of Arrhythmias(Wise decision mate)

Should anyone experience these weird heart beats consistently do not hesitate to seek out healthcare specialists :
ECG Test: The most common diagnostic test ECG records electrical rhythm within patient’s chest cavity onto graph paper when hooked up to multiple electrodes located strategically around torso .

    Table2:Tests Done To Confirm Arrhthmia
  • Do sleep well though for those with RSI you’re gonna feel cathartic since arm/neck movement restricted

The diagnosis also considers the patient’s medical history, family history, and other tests such as Holter monitor which it examines heart rhythm for a period of 24hours.

Treatment

Once diagnosed with arrhythmia , most cases can be managed effectively through:
Medications: Usage of medications to ease condition symptoms or handle underlining causal agents. These drugs range from beta-blockers (amiodarone)to anticoagulants.
Electrophysiological Studies (EPS): In extreme caeses ,The healthcare specialists will then perform EPS at times even leading to intervention causing death .

       Table3:Treatments associated with Arrhythmic complications

Electrical Cardioversion(Much Courage Needed )

It may reach scenarios whereby cardio version needs doing on patients who have long term intolerance spending time taking annoying medicines. This treatment involves delivering an electronic response shock –similar to that of defibrillators– designed in resetting your heart’s conduction system by inducing temporary sinus rhythm back into bowels just like shooting up people on battlefield after being pelted with hand grenades.. It take some massive courage however hope should never fall distant.

The Take Away(“Jesus Take my Heart!”)

Arrythmia refers to any abnormality stemming off the electrical activity within our hearts’ conduction systems resulting in deviation from usual timing patterns,  originating above or below AV node affecting how blood is pumped throughout our bodies . If you suspect anything odd always consult doctors immediately instead deriving information via amusing self-diagnostics.  

A lot isn’t known about this complex phenomenon and their unique fixes hence prevention measures must always be embraced. 
Take care of yourself!

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